Decision Resources, Inc., announces the publication of Hepatitis B Virus, a forthcoming study that evaluates the commercial potential of emerging therapeutic and prophylacytic treatments competing for market share in the hepatitis B arena.

  (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000303/DECISION )    Novel Antiviral Therapies Promise Significant Rewards 

Emerging HBV therapies under development strive to overcome the shortcomings of interferon-alpha and GlaxoSmithKline's lamivudine-currently the only drugs approved for the treatment of chronic HBV infection-and these therapies may allow new populations to benefit from treatment. Several new antiviral agents promise to improve upon lamivudine in terms of antiviral resistance and upon interferon-alpha in terms of efficacy, side effects, and mode of delivery. Based on the published results of clinical trials and interviews with leading clinicians and researchers, we predict that two emerging antiviral agents will be widely used in treating chronic hepatitis B:

  -- Gilead Sciences' adefovir dipivoxil. We expect adefovir dipivoxil to be      launched in all seven of the major markets in 2003. As this agent is      effective against both lamivudine-resistant HBV and HBV precore      mutants, we expect uptake of this drug to be swift. However, lamivudine      will maintain its edge as the first antiviral agent to be launched for      chronic HBV infection and thought-leaders continue to be impressed by      its efficacy, low cost, and lack of serious side effects. Thus, we      predict that lamivudine will retain its 45% market share in 2010.    -- Triangle Pharmaceuticals/Abbott Laboratories' emtricitabine.      Preclinical results have shown that emtricitabine possesses potent      activity against HBV. It acts synergistically with several nucleoside      analogues for the treatment of HBV.    New Prophylactic Vaccines Expected to Capture 20% Market Share 

Researchers are continuing their efforts to develop more-efficacious and convenient vaccines to reduce hepatitis B incidence and to treat chronic HBV. Bio-Technology General's Bio-Hep-B and Powderject Pharmaceuticals' Hepagene, in an attempt to improve upon the efficacy of existing HBV prophylactic vaccines, are using the S antigen and other surface proteins of the virus to enable successful immunization with significantly lower doses of vaccine than is possible with other recombinant hepatitis B vaccines. Consequently, we expect the emerging vaccines described in our report to account for 20% of HBV vaccine sales in 2010.

Hepatitis B Virus is part of Infectious Disease, one of six Pharmacor services that evaluate the commercial potential of drugs in research and development.

Decision Resources, Inc., is a world leader in pharmaceutical research publications, advisory services, and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources, and master their chosen markets. Founded as a subsidiary of Arthur D. Little, Inc., the company has provided strategic information services for 30 years. Visit the Decision Resources Web site at http://www.dresources.com/.

   Contact: Frank Sama, 781.296.2553 (telephone), 781.296.2525 (fax), or    sama@dresources.com.    In Europe, contact Francoise Bidart, +32.2.351.4082 (telephone),    +32.2.351.2347 (fax), or fbidart@decisionresources.be.    In Japan, contact Makiko Yoshimoto, +81.3.5401.2615 (telephone),    +81.3.5401.2617 (fax), or makiko@bl.mmtr.or.jp.                    MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here              http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X96511955 

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SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

Contact: Frank Sama of Decision Resources, +1-781-296-2553, sama@dresources.com